Friday, December 16, 2011
NPR's Science Friday Interview with Dr. Sacks, Dr. Tomaino, Dr. Bradt, and Andrew Rossetti, MMT, MT-BC
Monday, December 5, 2011
Sunday, November 20, 2011
SMWC Music Therapy Faculty News:
Dr. Tracy Richardson, MT-BC (Associate Professor and Director of Music Therapy) presided over meetings as the new president of the Great Lakes Region of AMTA, in addition to providing a voice as an Assembly Delegate (think of this group as the "Congress" of music therapy in the United States).
Sharon R. Boyle, M.M., MT-BC (Associate Professor and Coordinator of Undergraduate Music Therapy) co-presented with Dr. Jennifer Jones (Western Illinois University) about a parallel project they completed with their students in the spring about intentional and mindful self care. In addition, she presided for SMWC colleague Dr. Patricia McIntyre, who presented about the role of ethics in music therapy advocacy.
Highlights of the conference include Dr. Kenneth Bruscia's lecture as part of the Sears Lecture Series (see picture, courtesy of Debbie Bates, MMT, MT-BC), Jodi Picoult's video interview explaining her process of writing her recent novel "Sing You Home" (with a music therapist as main character), Dr. Connie Tomaino and clips from the recent movie "The Music Never Stopped" (based on Tomaino's work with a former patient), and the attendance of musician Ben Folds (most recently seen as judge of the t.v. show "Sing Off") to Saturday and Sunday of the conference.
Finally, this conference also brought SMWC the news that the American Music Therapy Association has officially approved our Music Therapy Equivalency Distance (MTED) program, which will commence in Fall 2012. See our website for more information: http://www.smwc.edu/music-therapy-equivalency-distance-program/
The next national conference will be held in October 2012 in St. Charles, IL.
Sunday, October 30, 2011
Wednesday, October 19, 2011
However, the most important factor in whether or not a music therapy student can complete a summer practicum experience is the willingness of music therapy clinicians to take on a student for this intensive experience. Working with students in a practicum requires supervision skill, strong clinical skills, and a commitment to the time needed to provide feedback and guidance to the student in collaboration with the faculty member. The SMWC music therapy faculty are so grateful to these professionals, one of whom is a graduate of the SMWC Master of Arts in Music Therapy program (Larisa McHugh, MA, MT-BC).
More than 15 SMWC music therapy students have completed a summer practicum in diverse settings and locations since the experience was developed by Sharon R Boyle, Associate Professor of Music Therapy, in 2003. Nina Galerstein, MM, MT-BC, first developed the idea and Boyle collaborated with her while teaching at another university. The experience was so successful that Boyle decided to develop a model which would work at SMWC. She has worked to develop long term relationships with skilled clinicians/supervisors and this has resulted in SMWC music therapy students entering internships with increased understanding of therapeutic process, improved clinical and music skills, professionalism, and a renewed excitement about their goal of becoming a music therapist. Some of the clinical sites and supervisors have included:
Nina Galerstein, MM, MT-BC-- Stockley Center (Georgetown, DE)
Larisa McHugh, MA, MT-BC-- Bethany Village (Dayton, OH)
Erin Fox, MA, MT-BC-- Good Samaritan at Stillwater (Stillwater, MN)
Ann Hannan, MT-BC-- Riley Hospital for Children -IU Health (Indianapolis, IN)
Lisa Swanson, MMT, MT-BC-- Orchard Manor (Lancaster, WI)
Jonni Fogerty, MM, MT-BC-- Fogerty Music Therapy (Bloomington, IN)
Julie Edgell, MA, MT-BC-- Meaningful Day Services (Fort Wayne, IN)
The experience and time that these clinicians have shared is invaluable to the future of our profession!
Recently, the following students completed summer practicum experiences:
Nicole Gilberti -- Orchard Manor
Katherine Mendenhall -- Riley Hospital for Children - IU Health
Briana Priester -- Bethany Village
|Jennifer Whitlow ('11) (center) at end of summer practicum with Orchard Manor music therapy supervisors Nikki Bossenbroeck (far left) and Lisa Swanson (far right).|
Monday, September 26, 2011
Monday, September 12, 2011
How do you feel you were prepared for professional life by the SMWC Music Therapy program?
What was your experience following your internship and as you moved into the professional world?
What do you feel are the greatest strengths of the SMWC Music Therapy program, looking back as a graduate from a few years ago?
Thursday, September 1, 2011
The music therapy classes have been incorporating Skype guest lecturers and presenters for a few years, but this presentation was pretty unique. Kat Fulton, MM, MT-BC, and NICU Music Therapist, is a speaker and board-certified music therapist whose passion is achieving therapeutic goals through making music. She has an active presence in social media through her blog Rhythm For Good ( and also through her organization SoundHealth Music )
During the class, she explained the limitations of "faciltiating" via Skype (sound delay!), and went on to engage the students in playing instruments, singing, explained how these experiences can be used in a variety of clinical settings (specifically with older adults), taught the students how to "self-faciltiate", and then allowed time for questions.
The use of technology in clinical work is becoming more prevalent and SMWC is working to provide students with teaching new ways of engaging clients, such as the option of combining live music and technology or providing students with a model of a new way to engage with others in areas related to music therapy. Kat Fulton's Skype Drum presentation was one way the students were able to benefit from a professional's generosity and area of expertise, without the boundary of distance.
Tuesday, August 16, 2011
(Picture: Grace Dubrowski, far left/back row, worked as a YMCA Day Camp Counselor this summer)
The summer is beginning to fade away as SMWC makes preparations for classes to begin on Tuesday, August 23, 2011.
There have been a lot of SMWC music therapy happenings over the summer! Music therapy students had jobs at various summer camps (e.g. Camp Lee Mar in Pennsylvania, working with children with special needs, YMCA camp, etc.), one student completed the Jamaica Field Project in June, and several completed summer practicums in Indiana, Wisconsin, and Ohio. In addition, several students completed their internships, got music therapy positions, got engaged, and one recent graduate got married.
(Picture: Cathleen Flynn, conducting supervised music therapy sessions as part of the Jamaica Field Service Project)
Features about various student experiences, as well as features about interns, first professional jobs, and recent graduates/alums will occur throughout the coming year. In addition, current music therapy students will continue to be highlighted and interviewed because SMWC music therapy students are doing wonderful things...our students are dedicated to affecting change in the world in a variety of ways. The upcoming generation of music therapists are stellar and we are happy to sing their praises!
(Picture: Sherry Bube, far left, Evening Program Leader and Outdoor Living Skills Instructor for Bradford Woods Therapeutic Recreation Summer Camps).
Wednesday, July 6, 2011
Julia Lopez-Kaley grew up in St. Joseph, MN, and moved to Milwaukee, WI, when she was 10. She is a woman who encompasses compassion and service to others. She spent a semester prior to her internship volunteering for the Sisters of Providence and spent several Spring Breaks assisting those affected by Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans and working in a soup kitchen/shelter in New York City. While a student on campus, she was a Resident Advisor, Vice-President of Music Therapy Club, and won the Zapapas Servant Leadership Award as a junior. She took time from her busy schedule to respond to a few questions.
Where are you completing your internship this summer? What is unique about this music therapy internship experience?
I am completing my internship at Finger Lakes DDSO in Newark, New York, a New York State facility serving adults 21 and older with developmental and intellectual disabilities. My caseload primarily consists of individual and 2:1 therapy sessions at a Day Habilitation facility in Newark and Geneva, New York. I have been learning how to work under an improvisational music therapy approach, which is based on the Nordoff-Robbins Model of Creative Music Therapy and humanistic psychology. In each session, a wide variety of music experiences are presented to the client(s) to aid in sensorimotor, cognitive, communication, and/or affective/emotional development.
How do you feel you have developed and grown since starting the SMWC Music
The amount that I have developed and grown since starting the SMWC music therapy program is completely immeasurable. When I think back to my freshman year of college, I don’t think “that person” could have guessed how much she would change and grow. The music therapy program at The Woods, the professors, and the entire experience completely transformed me. My confidence has grown, my skill set, my understanding, my awareness, openness, and acceptance of myself and of others. The music therapy program truly guided me down the path to start becoming the music therapist I am striving to be in the near future.
How do you feel you were prepared for your internship by the SMWC Music Therapy program?
Specifically, the use of improvisation and the support and encouragement to grow musically, clinically, and personally prepared me for my internship. Because I am learning how to work using clinical improvisation at my internship, the improvisation class at The Woods and the close relationships with my professors helped me tremendously, both as a musician and as a growing therapist. I may not have realized my love for the Creative Music Therapy model without the culture of clinical music improvisation and constant musical support. I feel that my experiences (both in the classroom and outside of it) and the support of the professors prepared me clinically and personally for my internship, as well as for what is to come when I am finished.
Why did you choose music therapy, and specifically the SMWC Music Therapy program?
It started with one of the simplest and most common responses: "I want to use music to help people." When considering careers, I could not imagine choosing a career that did not include music, yet I did not want to teach it and I did not want to perform for a living. Music therapy just fit the description of what I wanted in a career. Though what I wanted continued to change and transform as my understanding grew, the core passion for using music as the medium for change and growth always remained very strong and was nurtured and strengthened by all the music professors.
What do you feel are the greatest strengths of the SMWC Music Therapy program?
I chose the SMWC Music Therapy program because I connected to the professors and the campus, and I was attracted to the idea that I would be given the opportunity to observe in a clinical setting as early as the second semester of my freshman year. I knew that I would be part of a community that held similar values as I did and that I would receive close guidance and attention. I felt the many strengths of the SMWC Music Therapy program and the entire department when I auditioned and interviewed. I felt the warmth and friendliness of the professors, and I trusted them, right from the beginning.
I went to a large high school outside of Milwaukee and always thought that I would attend a large state college after high school. Before setting foot on the grounds of The Woods, I thought, "A women's college (smaller than my high school graduating class) in the middle of the woods?! Never." But when I drove onto the campus the first time and met the music professors, all of that changed completely. I fell in love with the beauty and peacefulness of The Woods and the friendliness of its students and professors, and knew by the end of my two-day visit that it was the place for me. I think that my years at The Woods, though challenging at times, were some of the best of my life. I now consider it my home and the wonderful people that I have met part of my family. In the end, it just felt right to me, and I have never regretted my choice.
How do you feel now that you're about to head into the music therapy
professional world? What are your goals for your future now that you've
completed your education/training at SMWC?
I am excited that I will finally have the chance to use the skills I have acquired to support and aid in the change and growth of others. With change comes anxiety, so I am definitely feeling that too. I hope to get my master's degree within the next 5 years, and my dream would be to complete Nordoff-Robbins training. Ultimately, I don't know where I will end up 5 or 10 years from now, but I continue to strive to be open to change, growth, and the many professional possibilities that are out there.
Monday, June 20, 2011
UPDATE 8/08/11: Spectrum Industries has recently changed to Developmental Services, Inc but continues to offer music therapy. Music therapy also remains available at Hamilton Center's Inpatient Unit.
Lylia Forsyth, MT-BC, can now be reached at (812)238-1500 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Wednesday, June 1, 2011
Sunday, May 15, 2011
Tribune Star (Terre Haute, IN) article about SMWC Commencement 2011.
Sharon R. Boyle, Associate Professor of Music Therapy and Coordinator of the SMWC Undergraduate Music Therapy Program, received the Sr. Mary Joseph Pomeroy Faculty Excellence Award for Teaching.
Click here for Boyle Faculty Bio
Thursday, May 12, 2011
Grace attended St. Dominic High School, where she was active in the music and athletic programs. She plays numerous instruments, including clarinet. She enjoys running, composing, and spending time with family and friends. She is working as a student assistant Band Librarian, is a Student Ambassador for SMWC, and is Assistant Track Coach at South Vermillion High School.
What drew you to pursue music therapy as a major?
When I was in high school, I had no idea what I wanted to study in college. I knew I wanted to be in a career where I helped people, so I began looking into all kinds of careers, from special education to massage therapy. I knew that music was my passion, but I also knew I didn't want to be a performance major. Around September of my senior year, I had finally settled on music education, but was still uneasy with my decision. One day I was talking to my mom about my future, and I said, "I wish there was a major where I could help people through music." I remember her looking at me and saying, "Have you considered music therapy?" I had never heard of this career and after researching it further, I knew that this was exactly the career I wanted.
Why did you decide to study music therapy at SMWC?
When I first visited the Woods, I was deciding between music therapy at SMWC and another institution. After visiting and talking to the music therapy faculty, I decided that the Woods was the right place for me for two main reasons: 1) I was guaranteed to receive individual attention with the small class sizes. I knew I would have the close classroom environment that I thrive in, both with faculty and my peers; and 2) I would be placed in the field (second semester of my first year) very early. For me, there is no better way to learn than hands-on learning. I wanted to "get my feet wet" as soon as possible, and I have already experienced three different clinical settings. The SMWC music therapy program has made me realize how much I love this career path!
Thursday, April 28, 2011
This honor has made it possible for her to accept an offer to participate in the Jamaica Field Service Project this June. She will volunteer in an intensive experience in rural Jamaica with other students from around the United States and Canada, under the supervision of board certified music therapists. The experience will include immersion in the culture, learning traditional drumming and songs, as well as working in varied rural school and healthcare settings. For more information about the Jamaica Field Service Project, visit: http://jafieldservice.com/
Saturday, April 16, 2011
Wednesday, April 13, 2011
- President -- Laura Kempton
- Vice-President -- Cathleen Flynn
- Secretary -- Grace Dubrowski
- Treasurer -- Nicole Gilberti
- Parliamentarian -- Sherry Bube
Congratulations to the new officers!
Wednesday, April 6, 2011
I chose to study music therapy because it allows me to combine two passions of mine - music and a genuine interest in helping others. After researching the profession, it also appealed to me as something that I will receive great satisfaction from working in this field - not just in the short-term, but for the rest of my life. Because music is a modality that is found within all cultures and societies and spans across various facets (such as generations, races, education levels, and spiritual belief systems), it is a commonality that allows for a music therapist to work with clients from various populations and with different needs. Addressing the needs of the client in a way that provides a level of ease to them while working towards achieving non-musical goals (including communication, social, cognitive, and motor skills), drew me into the field of music therapy, as well as it being profession where I can have a rewarding career helping others through music.
Why did you decide to study music therapy at the Woods?
When looking at the various MT programs that other colleges had to offer, a drawback that I found was the lack of observation and field work time. In many places, you wouldn't start until your Junior or Senior year observing, whereas, here at SMWC, you begin observations as a freshman in your second semester and continue until graduation. Especially with the field of music therapy, there is a difference between reading about and learning about different aspects of it (such as assessment, treatment planning, data collection) to actually observing music therapy being implemented with a client or a group of clients. Another aspect that drew me to the MT program at the Woods was the small professor to student ratio. This particular aspect allows for one to be able to have a learning environment in which inquiry and exploration are encouraged, personalized attention is given in all classes, as well as being able to be challenged to grow and develop into a woman who is well-equipped to be a leader in her profession and community. Although there is much more that I could say about why I decided to come to the Woods, I highly recommend a campus visit so that you can discover your own reasons for choosing the Music Therapy program at SMWC. Although the program can be challenging at times, it is highly rewarding!
Friday, April 1, 2011
Selections from "Songs of Travel" by Ralph Vaughan Williams
Selections from "Twelve Poems of Emily Dickinson" by Aaron Copland
"Blue Mountain Ballads" by Paul Bowles
Wednesday, March 23, 2011
Thursday, March 3, 2011
Spring is finally approaching after a very cold winter! We'll know spring has arrived at the Woods when we see buds on the trees.
This has been an exciting week for our music therapy students as they were able to meet Lori Alviso Alvord, M.D., author of "The Scalpel and the Silver Bear", which the students were assigned to read this semester. Alvord was the first female, Navajo surgeon and was a speaker on the College's 4-Star Series last night.
The students had the opportunity to do some book discussions in class this week, followed by lunch with Dr. Alvord yesterday and then the lecture at 7:00 p.m.
Alvord's message of encouraging each of us to embrace the Navajo ideal of "Walking in Beauty" and bringing harmony to all facets of our lives, the lives of others, and the environment, resonated with those of us who have chosen to serve others through music in healthcare.
Friday, February 25, 2011
In 1967, after his father Henry Sawyer (J.K. Simmons) forbids him to see a Grateful Dead concert, prodigal son Gabriel Sawyer (Lou Taylor Pucci) runs away from home. Nearly twenty years later, Henry, a straight-laced engineer and lover of big band music, is shocked to learn that his estranged son requires major surgery to remove a previously neglected brain tumor.
After the operation, the extent of Gabriel's condition is made clear: the tumor damaged the part of his brain that facilitates the creation of new memories. For Gabriel, past, present, and future become indistinguishable, and he lives fixed in the era of Vietnam, acid trips, and psychedelic music. Determined not to let their son slip away from them again, Henry and wife Helen (Cara Seymour) vow to connect with Gabriel, who is barely able to communicate effectively. Unhappy with Gabriel's lack of progress, Henry does his own research on brain injuries, which leads him to Dr. Dianne Daly (Julia Ormond). She is a music therapist who has used her methods to make significant progress with victims of brain tumors.
As Diane works with Gabriel, she realizes that he is most responsive to the music of the Rock and Roll era - The Beatles, Bob Dylan, and particularly the Grateful Dead. Even though he is unaware that the era of his music has long passed, the effect is remarkable, and he begins to be able to have conversations and express himself. Although Henry loathes rock and roll, he is determined to forge new memories and salvage his relationship with his son. While his own health fails, Henry begins his own pilgrimage through the bands of the sixties. As he learns the songs that animate his son's soul, he indeed begins to form an unusual but emotionally vibrant bond with the child he thought he had lost.
Wednesday, February 23, 2011
Author and physician, Lori Alvord, M.D., will be speaking at SMWC in Cecilian Auditorium at 7:00 p.m. on March 2, 2011.
Thursday, January 13, 2011
We look forward to this semester with Open Mic Night, Singing Valentines fundraiser, the Association for Indiana Music Therapy state meeting on February 11th, and so much more!